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"Tomorrow we will introduce the French to two lovely German girls named Big Bertha!"―Hans Lehmann[src]
Big Bertha was the nickname for the Krupp 420 millimeter howitzer, used by Germany in World War I. According to a French gunnery sergeant, Big Bertha took over a hundred men to load and fire, and used a two-thousand pound shell.
In September 1916, Indiana Jones first learned about Big Bertha from a French gunnery sergeant while delivering messages as a courier at Verdun. That night, Jones volunteered to spy on the German command bunker at the front lines. After listening to Oetzmann and Hans Lehmann banter about Heidi, he overhead that the Germans were bringing in two Big Bertha guns the next day. Jones escaped through no man's land, and brought his intelligence to Colonel Barc, and reported it directly to Generals Pétain and Nivelle. Despite Petain's objections, Nivelle ordered at attack on Fort Douaumont. Later, Petain used some aerial reconaissance to prove that the Germans did indeed bring two Big Berthas to Verdun, and issued a new order to cancel the attack. General Joseph Joffre arrived and ordered that the attack be re-started, but Jones destroyed the orders instead of delivering them to the front lines. The Big Berthas were set up, and a German commander commented to Werner that soon Bertha would be feasting upon the French. However, without the attack orders, the French were spared the destruction that could have been caused by the Big Berthas that day.
- The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles – "Verdun, September 1916" → Demons of Deception
- Verdun, September 1916 comic
- The Peril of the Fort
- Powder Keg - Europe 1900 to 1914 (Non-fiction source)